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EPA's Great Lakes 2008 Earth Day Challenge: A Prescription for Healthy Great Lakes

Release Date: 04/14/2008
Contact Information: Michael Basile (716) 551-4410, basile.michael@epa.gov

(Rochester, N.Y.) Almost everyone has a garage, basement, closet, drawer or medicine cabinet just waiting for an overhaul and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) wants to help people spring clean in a way that is green. Through its Great Lakes 2008 Earth Day Challenge, EPA hopes to collect at least 1 million pounds of electronic waste and 1 million pills from communities located near the Great Lakes. The Agency is partnering with local communities and businesses throughout the Great Lakes Basin to set up collection centers that will accept old electronics and unused, expired or unwanted medicine. EPA is encouraging people in the Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse areas of New York to do their part to help reach the million pounds and million pills goal.

"Participating in the Great Lakes 2008 Earth Day Challenge is a simple way for individuals to take action to protect the lakes," said Alan J. Steinberg, EPA Region 2 Regional Administrator. "These collection centers will give people an opportunity to finally get rid of things that have probably been hanging around their homes for a long time, like old cell phones, computers, typewriters, televisions, radios and medication."

The Great Lakes are an irreplaceable treasure. They are the largest source of fresh drinking water on earth and are vital to commerce and recreation in the upper Midwest. Responsible recycling and disposal of unwanted electronics and medicines will prevent contaminants such as lead, mercury and cadmium from polluting the Great Lakes basin.

Where and When:
ROCHESTER:
On Saturday, April 19 pharmaceutical waste can be dropped off between 8:00 am and Noon, No appointment necessary at Monroe County Rochester Operations Center 444 E. Henrietta Road.

On Saturday, April 19 electronic waste can be dropped off between 9:00 am and 2:00 pm, by appointment only, please call 585.753.7600, option 3.

On Saturday, June 7 pharmaceutical waste can be dropped off between 8:00 am and 1:00 pm, No appointment necessary at Rochester Water Bureau 10 Felix Street (corner of Dewey Avenue).

SYRACUSE:
On Saturday April 19th a special televisions-only collection event will take place at the Alliance Bank Stadium parking lot at Grant Blvd. Televisions can be dropped off between 8 AM until noon at a minimal cost of $5.00 for residential participants. Other electronic waste can be dropped off three days a week at their Community Collection Center located at 6085 Court Street Road, Syracuse, NY. The electronics collection dates and times are: Tuesdays - 4 PM - 8 PM; Thursdays 8 AM to noon; and on Saturdays 9 AM to 1 PM.

BUFFALO:
On Saturday, April 26 electronic waste can be dropped between 9 AM to 1:00 PM at Central Park Plaza located on Holden Street (off of East Amherst Street) in the City of Buffalo, NY.

For more information, a list of events, or to learn how participating organizations can register their events, visit: http://www.epa.gov/greatlakes/earthday2008. The Web site includes a "Plug-In to E-cycling" tool kit to help plan collection events.

For more information or technical assistance on planning an event, call EPA's toll-free Earth Day Challenge Hotline at 866-575-8543.

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